Customers seek support from their providers on the channels they prefer the most. Some businesses provide a customer service contact number, the others provide with an omnichannel suite that deals with customer queries from all the channels like Voice, Chat, Email, and Social alike. All these queries coming in from multiple channels are called inbound queries and that is how Inbound Call Centers have evolved with strategic inclusion of omnichannel customer engagement.
Since its inception, it has changed manifold, only to improvise the customer experience. Where earlier, to file a complaint, customers had to call the customer support and wait for the support reps to answer the phone, now it has evolved to providing service on self-service IVR for routine queries.
Let’s dig into how inbound call center software features have evolved and has advanced over the years while voice had been the dominant channel for businesses. Do you belong to the time when customer queries were handled with a call-based approach? This post is for you where we will understand how with the dominance of voice, we have moved towards other channels like Email, Chat, and Social that helps businesses leverage customer handling through these channels.
With the onset of omnichannel service, the state of the inbound call center has seen the following changes:
Omnichannel Customer Service Approach: Call volume still a struggle? You can choose an omnichannel inbound call center software that ensures that no interaction is missed while you can integrate all well-performing channels with your contact center software.
Earlier customers didn’t have an option to raise their queries except for waiting in the queue and speak to an available agent. Now, with omnichannel customer engagement, you can let your customers raise requests from their preferred channels like email, voice, chat, and social media to get an instant solution for their problems.
For instance, when Bryan, an agent is busy with a customer on call, he can efficiently handle all the chat queries coming in, ensuring faster query resolution.
Providing Personalized Customer Experience: Customers like to be valued and they expect the brands to know their details and understand their queries the first time they call.
When agents are pre-informed about customer’s information like their name, contact details, previous conversation history, etc., agents will be able to deliver a personalized experience.
Integrating inbound calling software with industry-grade in-house or third-party CRMs, helps the agents to retrieve customer’s information and prepares them well for their queries. Arm agents to get a preview of customer’s history to deliver a meaningful and contextual conversation
According to Accenture, 75% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase from a company that knows their name and purchase history and recommends products based on their preferences.
Routing Customer to Best Available Agent: When a customer lands in any queue, they could be transferred to the best-suited agent according to their IVR selection. This ensures that customers are given the experience that they expect to be delivered with.
For VIP customers, with preset parameters, you can shorten the IVR and direct him/her to the appropriate agent in minimum time thus ensuring that customers are satisfied with your brand. With smart routing parameters like preferred agent routing, IVR selection, office hour configuration, language preference, etc. agents can deliver a superior customer experience and ensure an increased First Contact Resolution.
Multi-Level Interactive IVR: With an effective inbound call center software, you can resolve 80% of routine queries with a self-service IVR. Help your customers with voice prompts to find answers without involving your agents.
With customizable IVR solutions, you can preset the business workflow as per the customers’ demand like call routing algorithm, business hour configuration, and custom welcome prompts.
Call Activity Logs: If you have ever called in a customer service department, you must have heard, “your call will be recorded for quality & training purposes.”
Businesses are asked to keep a call record for to adhere with compliance requirements. In banks and financial institutions, maintaining the call and activity record is very important. All the interactions including call recording, notes, comments, chat, etc. are saved within the system and can be verified whenever needed.
For instance, when Ron makes a purchase of some policy over a call, to validate his data, the bank will keep a voice recording to avoid any kind of discrepancy in the future.
Monitoring Agents Productivity: What is the end goal of your business? Does your business depend upon the efficiency of call handling? Businesses are more focussed on agents’ performance to get the right results.
With an effective inbound call center software, managers now can keep a track of agents’ activities like Average Handling Time (AHT), After Call Work (ACW), Agent Wrap Time (AWT), etc, to closely monitor the productivity of agents and any specific campaign thus ensuring that the business goals are aligned with agents’ KPIs.
Additionally, managers can keep a check on agents’ real-time activities with built-in capabilities of snoop, whisper, confer, barge, and transfer. With these features, the manager can also provide on-call assistance to the agents to ensure that the customer’s query is resolved in a timely manner.
Campaign Management: While earlier agents were dedicated to either inbound or outbound campaigns, businesses had to invest more in their resources. With smart calling strategies, agents could be assigned to both the campaigns considering their skill set. This helps businesses utilize agents’ idle time and maximize agent productivity.
For instance, Bryan as an agent is handling inbound calls for queries related to car loan policies and in his idle time, he manages outbound calls to remind the customers about their pending installments.
With the co-existence of channels like Voice, Chat, Email, and Social, inbound calling gives a wide range of options to both agents and customers. It is an undeniable fact that today’s customers choose to be present at social media than emails and they seek a quick response to all their queries. With the changing state of inbound call centers, agents can proactively handle customer queries across channels and maximize their productivity, putting their best foot forward with best call center software for inbound calling.